Virgin America and AirCell to Take Broadband Internet to the Skies

Virgin America and AirCell partner to deliver broadband internet and

instant messaging at 35,000 feet



Sep 13, 2007, 01:00 ET from Virgin America

    SAN FRANCISCO and ITASCA, Ill., Sept. 13 /PRNewswire/ -- Virgin
 America, a next generation airline that began service on August 8th, today
 announced that it is partnering with AirCell(R)in an effort aimed at
 offering air-to-ground broadband internet service on Virgin America flights
 sometime in 2008. Guests onboard America's newest airline will be able to
 access the internet either through their wifi-enabled personal devices or
 through the Red(TM) Inflight Entertainment system at every seat.
 
     Customized for Virgin America, the system is anticipated to allow
 guests to connect to the internet with the AirCell Broadband Service, using
 either their Red(TM) seatback video screens or their own wifi enabled
 portable gaming devices, laptops, PDAs or Smartphones. As such, in addition
 to the many entertainment choices currently offered by Red(TM) guests will
 be able to check and send web-email from their seatbacks through Red(TM)'s
 TALK -- the airline's onboard chat system -- using popular instant
 messaging services such as MSN(R), Google(R) talk, Yahoo! (R) Skype, and
 AIM(R).
 
     "We believe that broadband connectivity on our planes will help enhance
 the inflight experience for our guests," said Charles Ogilvie, Virgin
 America's Director of Inflight Entertainment & Partnerships. "Whether it's
 IMing with your friends, updating your blog, getting a stock quote, sending
 photos from your trip to friends, watching a movie or sending a work email,
 we plan to make it all available on a Virgin America plane."
 
     Once operational, the Virgin America-AirCell system will allow Virgin
 America's guests to receive this airborne functionality on every flight.
 Virgin America is the first airline to announce and commit to a planned
 full-fleet deployment of broadband connectivity.
 
     "Equipping an entire fleet of aircraft with broadband capability is an
 enormous step forward for the airline industry, and more importantly for
 passengers. The excitement here at AirCell to see our service complement
 Virgin America's Red(TM) is amazing!" said Jack Blumenstein, CEO. "Our
 service is designed from ground up to help airlines reach new heights and
 Virgin America is certainly using it for that."
 
     It is anticipated that the AirCell on Red(TM) capability will be made
 available on Virgin America aircraft sometime in 2008.
 
     About Virgin America:
     As San Francisco's hometown airline, Virgin America is a next
 generation low-fare carrier that will serve as many as 10 cities within a
 year of operation, and up to 30 cities within five years. Virgin America's
 brand new planes will offer a host of inventive guest features aimed at
 bringing a little fun back to flying -- including the most advanced
 personal in-flight entertainment system in the domestic airline market,
 mood-lit cabins, custom-designed leather seats and plugs for laptops and
 other portable electronic devices at every seat. To learn more about Virgin
 America visit: www.virginamerica.com.
 
     About AirCell:
     AirCell LLC is the leader in global airborne telecommunications for the
 Commercial and Business Aviation markets. The winner of the FCC's exclusive
 broadband frequency license in 2006, AirCell is pioneering a revolutionary
 new wireless broadband system for North America. AirCell broadband system
 will include robust Wi-Fi hotspots that enable airline passengers to surf
 the Internet, use e-mail, and log on to their corporate VPN's using their
 personal Wi-Fi equipped devices. The system will also offer airline
 operational communications capabilities and provide a path to a wealth of
 future cabin services. Set for introduction in 2008, the new broadband
 service will also be available to business aircraft operators, offering a
 similar set of features. AirCell (http://www.AirCell.com) has facilities in
 Louisville, Colorado, and Itasca, Illinois.
 
 
 

SOURCE Virgin America